They huffed, and they puffed, but they just couldn’t blow the resistance to war in Syria down. After years of red lines in sand, dubious poison gas incidents, and finally, a skeptical Commander in Chief- it is apparent the military industrial complex (MIC) has pivoted to a new foe- old foe Iran.
Syria has been a tough sell for the war-mongers. At the end of the day, Syria just doesn’t have the name-recognition required to whip up the masses. Many people have never heard of it, even more have no idea where it is, and nobody sees the need to be there. They don’t have a bin Laden or Saddam Hussein, no nuclear weapons, and no history of conflict to point to.
With signs pointing to further declining hostilities, and prospects growing slimmer by the day for someone to bomb the hell out of, the MIC has announced that things are going on- dangerous things- and it is all Iran’s fault.
As per usual, the attacks on the oil tankers are not without controversy. We say Iran did it, and we’ve got the proof. Considering our track record, such claims are reasonably met with skepticism.
It is easy to say Iran has nothing to gain from such an attack, but they haven’t done themselves any favors by threatening to do this very thing for months- including just three days prior.
Regardless of who did it, I believe the end result will be the same, and it is already a done deal. If it hadn’t been these tanker attacks, it would have been some other garden-variety provocation of the week. To illustrate my point with some good old-fashioned anecdotal evidence:
I had an interesting conversation last week with the Captain of one of those big vehicle carrier ships. These huge vessels, about the size of a cruise ship, carry vehicles of all types. From this port they predominantly haul cars, trucks, and SUV’s- with the occasional industrial vehicle like a dump truck or crane- to Middle Eastern ports. This captain told me that now, and for a few months now, they are carrying large numbers of military vehicles to the Middle East.
Hmmmm. Somebody must have known this tanker attack was coming eh?
It is tempting to say that Iran may be getting set-up, by the itchy trigger fingers at the MIC. That they are only using the North Korean strategy of bluster and intimidation to get what they want, and that they are smart enough to know war with the US will be very costly.
However, when dealing with Iran, there is a factor that is missing from most equations:
Islam, like Christianity, has end-times beliefs. (Many of them are very similar to Christian beliefs- albeit inverted and/or distorted). In 2005, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad brought to light some of these apocalyptic motivations when he prayed for the return of the Mahdi during an address before the United Nations.
Islam believes that a great conflict between the Muslims and the infidels will take place. This war will actually not go well for the Muslims. Just when they are at the point of being destroyed- the Mahdi or the Twelfth Imam, will appear and save them. He will wipe out the infidels and establish the caliphate. So, provoking a war with the US is just hastening the coming of the Mahdi. That is what Ahmadinejad believed.
It could easily be put this way: You’ve got one side that thinks it is necessary to kick some arse. The other side believes it is necessary to take an arse-kicking. How do you think that will play out?
Pray for peace. Prepare for war.